Mixed martial artist trains night and day

Dustin Poirier is a professional mixed martial artist competing as a featherweight in the Ultimate Fighting Championship. So his workout regimen is hardcore and niche.

But regular fitness buffs and even beginners might get some ideas from him about technique and diet, which includes lots of fruits and vegetables, almost no meat, and at least a gallon and a half of water each day.

Featured in the 2011 documentary, "Fightville," Poirier trains at American Top Team in Coconut Creek.

Q: What's your workout routine?

A: Really depends who I'm fighting next, but I always train six times a week, twice a day. Take off Sundays. Well, me and my wife run 5 miles on Sunday. That's my active recovery. We run slow, at a 9-minute mile.

Twice a week, I do boxing. Right now, I'm going to work out five three-minute rounds of jump rope, 15 minutes total. Then three three-minute rounds on a heavy bag doing drills. Each round will be three different exercises, rotating from straight punches to body punches to combinations. And then I run 3 miles. Nothing crazy, just 7- or 8-minute miles.

Tuesday, Thursday are hard sparring days. In the morning, I do groundwork, which is MMA fighting on the ground. And at night, hard sparring with professional fighters ... wrestling, kickboxing, everything.

Monday, Wednesday, Friday are strength and conditioning, explosive stuff at nighttime. A lot of body weight, not too many weights. I do box jumps, flipping a tractor tire, pushing a sled with weights on. I use bands for resistance.

Monday, Wednesday, I wrestle two hours in the morning. Also work with a boxing coach Monday and Wednesday for 45 minutes before the morning class. Friday morning is different — sometimes jiu-jitsu or a run. That's usually specific training for my next fight.

Q: You weigh 170 pounds, isn't that heavy for a featherweight?

A: I fight at 145 but usually weigh-in in the high 160s or 170. I'll lose it before a fight.

Q: Would you keep fit even if you weren't a pro athlete?

A: Yeah, to be healthy and live long. For the last five or six years, I've been living a clean lifestyle. Years ago, I just didn't know about dieting and healthy eating.

Q: Why did you get involved with MMA?

A: I've always been a fighter, getting in trouble when I was younger. Started hooking up with guys who boxed, then I went to a kickboxing gym one day.

Q: Played any other sports?

A: Wrestled and played football all through grade school and freshman year in high school.

Q: Do you have any physical problems that hinder exercise?

A: No, been fighting since 2007 and just had bumps and bruises, a fracture here and there, but nothing serious.

Q: How long does it take to recuperate after a fight?

A: Depends on the battle, but usually I take a solid week off to let my body heal.

Q: Typical daily diet?

A: I usually get down a gallon and a half of water at least. I eat lots of fruits and vegetables, blueberries and oatmeal. I have to cut a lot of weight when fighting, so I keep my metabolism high with lots of small meals throughout the day. About five meals a day. Not a whole lot of meat.

Q: Do you drink only water?

A: Coconut water sometimes. Sometimes Powerade Zero, but I try to stay away from artificial stuff.

Q: Take any vitamins or sports-nutrition products?

A: I use protein powders. Prefer plant-based ones. And I use a multivitamin, fish oil, sometimes Super Green Supplements. I like amino acids with electrolytes.

Q: Performance-enhancing drugs?

A: We get tested. Can't take that stuff.

Dustin Poirier

Age: 24

City of residence: Coconut Creek

Height/weight: 5 feet, 9 inches; 170 pounds

Occupation: Mixed martial artist

Copyright © 2018, CT Now